Alex Wilgus surprises me with his flattering comparison of Your Working Boy to Orestes Brownson. Turns out it’s really a short essay in praise of the blogger as intellectual work-in-progress. Excerpt:

We live in searching times, but ours is not the first. Instead of deriding the insecure footing of searchers, Lasch gives us leave to appreciate the oft-derided intellectual life of people outside the academy. After all, having the guts to publish one’s thoughts is a good way to test them out. It’s a sort of populist education that can easily lead to demagoguery if one is unreflective, but if one is smart, honest, and has a healthy receptivity to criticism, one may achieve a career like Brownson’s or Dreher’s and produce with little other than a sharp mind and a small publication, a real contribution to intellectual history. Sure, one could measure one’s thoughts more thoroughly before declaring oneself, thus saving oneself from a good deal of derision, but not everybody is so settled on one’s own philosophy and tradition as a Ross Douthat or a Jonathan Chait.

That’s really kind to a TMI typer like me. Thanks